Question about 1994 Pontiac Grand Am

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Computer needs cmos software updated.

Hi emissionwiz,

I have a 1994 Grand AM SE. The (ABS light & Service Engine light) keeps coming on. The ABS light most often stays on as soon as the car is started & stay’s on. (The manual stated to shut off the car, wait a minute & start it back up. That worked foe about a year but no longer).
I maintain frequent service. (There is nothing wrong with either).
My local station has the right equipment to check the computer & has done so. Their conclusion was to take the care to a dealer. I did so. I was told the computer needs a cmos software update but the price is $1500.00. The brightness of these two drive me nuts while driving at night.
There has got to be another way to fix this issue or at the vary least disconnect the led’s from coming on at all.
Six years ago I bought this car for $2999.00 with 55,055Mls on it.
I just can't see spending that kind of money.

Is there a way around this?
Something that's not going to hurt so darn much!

Mike

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  • 3 more comments 
  • Mike Peluso
    Mike Peluso Oct 29, 2008

    Maybe I didn't explain myself as I should have. The ABS system functions correctly. There is nothing wrong with the engine. The only reason these two led come on is because the computer is malfunctioning.

    The EPROM in the cars computer needs updated. (Computer does not need replaced, just a EPROM chip). This update is software, not hardware.

    I'll gather more information about the car's computer & the EPROM chip. Serial number/part number & see if I can find the error function number that the computer shot out.

    This will take about a week. I'll start with my local service station. I repair their computer's for free.

    So we have a good relationship. I'll get back to you.



    Mike

  • Mike Peluso
    Mike Peluso Oct 29, 2008

    While going through my service invoices I came across a scan that was preformed on the computer.

    It reads, (Code 51-PROM or PCM error); R&R PCM & check terminals.

    As mentioned local service found nothing wrong.



    Does this help?



    Next step is to visit the dealer. I know 1 person there well, (with this service in hand I'll receive the dealers results.

  • Mike Peluso
    Mike Peluso Nov 01, 2008

    Hi emissionwiz,

    So sorry it has taken so long! The local dealer said I need a new PCM wich includes the Eprom.

    The part number is 88961144. I did not ask what the part cost. Once the part has been installed it will need to be programed. That cost is one hour $85.00.



    So my question is this!

    Can I buy this item? From where? (Including through the internet if possible).

    Can I install the part & will I be able to drive the car to the dealer for the software installation?



    Mike

  • Mike Peluso
    Mike Peluso Nov 01, 2008

    If you have programed 100's where would you look for this part?

  • Mike Peluso
    Mike Peluso Nov 01, 2008

    Hi emissionwiz,
    I understand what you are saying. I was expecting a wee bit more information to help me in my search for the PCM. Any site would have helped, or even what to search for.


    The local dealer set me in the right direction by giving me the correct part name & part number.

    Than suggested what to type in a search window. That got me started in the right direction. Through searching I was able to find where in the car the PCM is located. How to remove it. Do's & don'ts.

    I found a site that ask for my vin number so they can program the PCM. Shipped to my door & ready for installation with a warranty. If my friend at the dealer was you I would have rated it a fix.



    Thank you for your time.

    Mike

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  • Pontiac Master
  • 70,347 Answers

Look I don't know about the dealer charge, it seems high, what part are they replacing? I will try to look it up if you have a part number. This I do know when the light is on the system is disabled, so should you get in a sticky situation where the anti-lock brakes may save you serious damage to the car or injury to you then what price is this worth? You make the decision.

Posted on Oct 28, 2008

  • 1 more comment 
  • yadayada
    yadayada Oct 29, 2008

    Updating an Eprom does no cost $1500, have done hundreds, 1 hour labor, no parts, if the ABS light is on the ABS is disabled, the purpose of the light is to let you know that a malfunction has occurred. I really don't know what else to tell except find out the exact nature of the repair, their is more to it than this update.

  • yadayada
    yadayada Nov 01, 2008

    That I can't say, you will have to just check around with different rebuilders of automotive control modules.

  • yadayada
    yadayada Nov 01, 2008

    My friend this was done through a factory system called a service bay diagnostic system, I entered the info the machine did the rest, kind of like when you scan a PC operating system for updates from microsoft, except these came from GM and later Ford.

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